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Effects of Potassium Sulfate on Adaptability of Sugarcane Cultivars to Salt Stress under Hydroponic Conditions

Ashraf, Muhammad, Shahzad, Sher Muhammad, Arif, Muhammad Saleem, Riaz, Muhammad, Ali, Shafaqat, Abid, Muhammad
Journal of plant nutrition 2015 v.38 no.13 pp. 2126-2138
cultivars, culture media, dry matter accumulation, hydroponics, plant tissues, potassium, potassium sulfate, root shoot ratio, salinity, salt stress, salt tolerance, sodium, sodium chloride, sugarcane
The effect of potassium sulfate (K ₂SO ₄) on adaptability of sugarcane to sodium chloride (NaCl) stress was investigated under hydroponic conditions. Two sugarcane cultivars, differing in salinity tolerance, were grown in half strength Johnson's solution at 80 mM NaCl with 0, 2.5 and 5.0 mM potassium (K) as K ₂SO ₄. Salinity disturbed above and below-ground dry matter production in both sugarcane cultivars. However, salt sensitive cultivar showed more reduction in shoot dry matter and higher root:shoot ratio compare to the salt tolerant cultivar under. Application of K significantly (p < 0.05) improved dry matter production in both sugarcane cultivars. The concentration of Na was markedly increased with increasing salinity; however, the application of K reduced its uptake, accumulation and distribution in plant tissues. Salinity induced reduction in K concentration, K-uptake, K utilization efficiency (KUE) and K:Na ratio in both sugarcane cultivars was significantly improved with the addition of K to the saline growth medium.